If this was your first time reading “Old Friends,” you may think it’s a tagline used to describe the fellow pictured above and not the standard title for the feature. In fact, it could just as easily read “Good Neighbor,” MidWeek‘s feature that recognizes volunteers.
Larry Price had been a popular and important part of the community long before he appeared on MidWeek‘s cover in March 1985. The former University of Hawaii football coach and onetime member of the Los Angeles Rams is more than just half of the state’s most popular radio team, he is also a professor at Chaminade University, MidWeek columnist, president of the OIA Foundation and, as mentioned, a good neighbor and old friend.
“I always had two jobs. I have never been without more than one job. I get bored real easy,” says the 70-year-old Price.
In case you’re wondering, Price draws no salary from MidWeek, OC-16, for which he broadcasts OIA football games, or much of his teaching. He donates money earned from both to the Larry Price Scholarship Fund and to the OIAF.
And because no good deed can go unpunished, on March 3, Price will be honored during the OIA Foundation fundraiser at the Sheraton Waikiki with a roast. A dubious honor at best.
“I kind of got ambushed there,” he says. “They approached me with ideas about fundraising. I said ‘You got to have a niche.’ There are 56 fund-raising golf tournaments a year in Hawaii. And you got as many wine tasting and cheese events, and that’s inappropriate for high school students and athletics. So we came up with an idea of a roast if we could find someone who is roastable.”
After throwing around names like Walter Dods and Burt Kobayashi, the big wigs together with OIA principals met in secret and decided on Price.
“I am very leery. I am so full of flaws that the people may end up hurting themselves laughing so much. Especially with the roasters they have. Rick Blangiardi, the first recruit at the university when I was the coach. If he starts talking I might end up in jail. Mike Perry is going to be the MC. Karen Keawehawaii, Frank DeLima and Augie T - this could be tragic. I’m just going to sit there like a pomegranate. This really could be tragic.”
The $150-a-plate fund-raiser will benefit all OIA programs and is at the very same hotel where Larry worked security while studying at UH, the Sheraton Waikiki. Cocktails start at 5:30 and the Larry Price barbecue at 7 p.m. For more information, contact the OIA at 421-4394.
- Steve Murray
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